Jimmy Page says it was a mistake to hire Phil Collins for Led Zeppelin’s Live Aid reunion

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“We were really in trouble”

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Jimmy Page has said that it was a mistake to recruit Phil Collins to fill in on drums for Led Zeppelin at Live Aid.

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Both Collins and drummer Paul Martinez played live at the famous 1985 concert with reunited Led Zep – Page, Robert Plant and John Paul Jones, as did bassist Tony Thompson.

  • Read more: Led Zeppelin – Ranked the Albums

Speaking in a new interview with many times And The Sunday Times, Page admitted that it was “not smart enough” to reform the band, who parted ways in 1980 after the death of their drummer John Bonham.


“The drummer didn’t get a ‘rock and roll’ debut,” Page told Live Aid. “So we were in real trouble with that.”

He also told NS Times That Led Zeppelin had less than two hours for their three-song set, which included the classics “Whole Lotta Love” and “Stairway to Heaven.”

Led Zeppelin reunited in 2007 for a performance at The O2 in London. Recalling how nervous he was before the concert, Page told many times: “A lot more could go wrong. I didn’t want to be the one to make a mistake.”

Phil Collins reflected on the disastrous Live Aid show during an interview last year, explaining: “If I could walk, I would have done, ‘Cause I didn’t need to and I felt like a spare part.”

Much of the Genesis musician’s preparation for the concert came from listening to Led Zeppelin’s track on a flight to Philadelphia. “I didn’t rehearse when I got there, but I listened to ‘Stairway to Heaven’ on the Concorde,” he said. “I came and went to the caravan, and Robert said: ‘Jimmy Page is belligerent’.”


Meanwhile, Genesis was recently forced to postpone the rest of the show on their UK reunion tour “due to positive COVID-19 tests within the band”.

The group, which hit the road for the first time in 14 years last month, aims to announce new dates “as soon as possible.”

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